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Left stranded by airport taxis

A RETURNING holidaymaker imagined she’d have to wheel her disabled husband down the A45 after waiting over two hours for a black cab at Birmingham Airport.

A RETURNING holidaymaker imagined she’d have to wheel her disabled husband down the A45 after waiting over two hours for a black cab at Birmingham Airport.

Sonia and Geoff Lewis were left stranded at the airport on Wednesday morning when black cabs failed to turn up at the nearby rank.

Luckily, a friendly police officer eventually helped carry their cases over to the International Station where they managed to find a black cab some 130 minutes after landing from Tenerife.

Disabled Geoff who had his leg amputated in November last year cannot use normal taxis because he cannot manoeuvre in and out.

“It was really upsetting,” explained 62-year-old Sonia.

“We were ready to go home at 12.30am but no black cabs would come into the airport.

“After waiting for two hours I had visions of walking home down the Coventry Road pushing Geoff and wheeling our two cases behind.

“We eventually got a taxi at 2.45am from the train station but I don’t know what we would have done without the assistance of the policewoman.”

Passenger Transport Solutions (PTS) took over the airport contract from Birmingham and Solihull Taxi Association on June 1 and an airport spokesperson said they were ‘appalled’ with the way Mr and Mrs Lewis were treated.

“This week’s change in the management of the airport’s taxi operation from BASTA to PTS has led to a temporary mix of private hire and black cabs serving the airport,” she said.

“There were no private hire cabs equipped to take wheelchair passengers and at the time of their late night arrival unfortunately no black cabs were available.

“We have now put a procedure in place to ensure that Hackney Carriages are available throughout the night and stress that this was a one-off situation due to the transition period underway.”

BASTA were unobtainable at the time the Solihull News went to press.

What do you think? Write to us at the Solihull News, 150 High Street, Solihull, B91 3SX or e-mail: solihull_news@mrn.co.uk.

 

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